I was offered a chance to try out L'Essentiel Botanics furniture paint by Michelle at Serendipity House in New Hampshire. Since I've been doing a series on chalk paint products, I was anxious to give it a try in my cedar chest flip.
If you are looking to remove the chemicals from your home, look into L'Essentiels Botanics. My family is working on it as well and I was pleasantly surprised to hear of L'Essentiel. I'm no vegan, but I am concerned about the chemicals in EVERYTHING we use and eat!
Their furniture paint line is vegan (other than beeswax), all natural, and in biodegradable containers with no masking agents. The chalks, clays, minerals, pigments are made by a small company in Australia in small batches. The wax has no solvents (i.e. drying agents) and is smooth with great coverage. The clear wax, which has no solvents, can be used on hands, feet, face, and is often used by farmers.
Michelle was kind enough to give me two bottles of paint and glaze. Read on to see what I did with it…
I did find the consistency to be silky smooth giving me a professional finish. I was so impressed with how well it went on and coverd that I took a video of part of my process.
This stuff is smoooooth!
Botanics paint doesn't require waxing, but I decided to try the glaze since I've never used glazed on a piece of furniture before.
Step 1 – Clean and disassemble – knobs and hinges.
Step 2 – Sand the top to smooth out years of scratches and gouges.
Step 3 – Paint top and bottom. I used a darker gray (Steel) for the bottom of the chest and a lighter gray (Ash) for the lid.
Step 4 – Paint the new and old hardware – the new drawer pulls were black, so I painted them with the L'Essentiels steel and lightly distressed them to add character.
The new pulls are from Hobby Lobby (half off, of course). I dabbed a bit of paint on the tiny pulls that are original with the cedar chest too so they would match. I also dabbed a bit of paint on the lock to tie all three types of hardware together.
Step 5 – Distress the lid and base after they have dried for a bit. I used my blow dryer to hurry along the drying process just a bit.
Step 6 – Do a little fancy stenciling on the lid to add character. I ordered the Cafe Paris by Americana Decor* reusable stencil from Amazon. It was only $5.45 – what a deal!
Step 7 – Mix the L'Essentiels (Ash) paint with the L'Essentiels glaze and use it to highlight the chest – paint it on, wipe off just enough to leave it streaked to give it dimension, leaving it in the nooks and crannies. I used 1/2 tbsp. of paint to 4 tbsp. of glaze. If I had to to do again, I'd use less paint to tint the glaze.
The variations you see in the paint in the picture below are not brush strokes – it is from the (Ash) tinted glaze layer I applied atop the darker (Steel) layer.
Step 8 – Wait for it…wait for it… (to dry) and then stand back and admire your work!
You can turn a piece of junk into a treasure. Really. You can. Then you will ask yourself why you waited so long.
This blanket chest was dropped off to our church years ago by a man in or church who was disposing of a bunch of junk from his friend's house. We used it for many years, forgiving its pitiful ugliness by focusing on its usefulness.
It has now been redeemed!
Fun facts about Michelle from Serendipity House
She paints for interior design as a therapeutic outlet. I started out the same way and I bet you did too. I want one of those bumper stickers that says, "I'd rather be painting," (you know, like the ones that say, "I'd rather be fishing").
Serendipity House carries L’Essentiel Botanics Furniture Paint because of the smooth texture and how little paint is needed for coverage (for the same reason I L.O.V.E.D. it). Michelle is one of two retailers currently in US who carry L'Essentiels.
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Leave a comment and let me know what you look for in a paint. Is it price? quality? coverage? durability?
Thanks for visiting!
*Disclosure and disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links. If you buy anything after clicking on one of the affiliate links, I receive a small commission of the sale. The cost to you is the same, and I only link to items that I think would benefit my readers. The paint used in this tutorial was a gift from Serendipity House in exchange for a honest reveiw – all my opinions are my own. Thanks for visiting!